Name (As you want it to appear): Brian J and Aaron P
Date of Hunt: December 1, 2016
Location of Hunt: Eastern Colorado
Animal Hunted: Antelope
Were you successful?: Yes!
Weather, Wind, and Conditions: Clear with slight steady wind. Upper 50’s during the day getting in the Low 30’s at night.
Interesting Details of the Hunt: The time had come! We finally got the opportunity to hunt antelope in eastern Colorado. Through a church contact, we had been able to establish a relationship with a farmer who not only let us set up camp on his property, but also allowed us to hunt on his land for both antelope and muleys. Brian had a tag for both while Aaron just had an antelope tag. To be prepared, we took the 4 hour drive from Denver one Saturday during the summer and scouted out the property. We were ready to go.
Our season opened up December 1st, and by 2 am we were loaded up and out the door. We had about 3 days to hunt and were very hopeful we could get a couple animals.
After a wrong turn, a broken heater in the truck, and a dead battery, we finally got camp set up and started hunting. Because of our “difficulties” we started a couple hours later than we wanted, but at least we were out. First day of the season and we were hopeful!
I dropped off Brian to walk through a CRP field while I drove around the property to see if I could find anything. A short time later I did have a herd of about 30 sprint by in front of my truck, but they were moving so fast that I didn’t have time to get a decent shot. While it was exciting to see some animals so soon, 2 hours later, I hadn’t seen anything else.
I went back and picked up Brian. Besides a very startled jackrabbit, Brian had seen nothing but grass and shrubs. We jumped back in the truck and started driving out of the CRP area when suddenly we both spotted 6 antelopes running full speed through the field in our general direction. We jumped out of the car and got into the field and laid down. They were over 200 yds off to our right and were flying through the field kicking up dust. We knew that we didn’t have a shot at that point so we just waited and watched. As they started to get further away, it looked like our chances were dying, but suddenly there was a barbwire fence that made them slow down, turn back slightly in our direction and actually stop.
We lay perfectly still but we knew that they saw us, and they stared intently in our direction. I had my rangefinder ready and so I got a reading and whispered it to Brian who had his 270 all set up on the bi-pod. We were at 450 yds. Brian was laying prone and so he took his time, got his breath right, and slowly pulled the trigger.
At the sound of the shot, I was fairly certain I saw one of the antelope drop while the rest took off away from us, but we couldn’t see clearly from where we were. We knew we had to check it out. Brian wasn’t so sure with the long shot, but any shot ethically deserves a good look. 450 yards is a long way to walk when you are guessing yourself the entire time. We both went back and forth trying to decide if we saw something, or if it was a rock, or maybe even a bag, or piece of trash. It wasn’t until we had got about 50 yards away that we could see that there was indeed an antelope down! Time for celebration.
Brian had made an incredible shot. It ended up being 457 yards (He had shot at one towards the back of the group) and it was a shot that hit directly in the mouth and through the back of the head. We had been hunting less than 3 hours and we already had our first harvest!
We had more success on that trip including a muley doe, a couple doves, and a bunch of rabbits, but the highlight of the trip was getting our first antelope!